#DFG: Canceling the Noise

Is there any level of suspension that you would advise Tom to accept?


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dcmissle

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We're probably oast the point I was hoping for, an unpublished affirmance. Now I don't want to hear anything before the schedule comes out. The League may fuck us anyway with iron the first four weeks, but no further encouragement is needed or wanted.
 

Bongorific

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There's no particular timetable but things typically slow down July/August.

Does Marciano or anyone else know when the clerkships run? I've received several decisions in NDNY the week the clerks switch out.
 

Marciano490

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There's no particular timetable but things typically slow down July/August.

Does Marciano or anyone else know when the clerkships run? I've received several decisions in NDNY the week the clerks switch out.
I think Katzmann switches all three at once, which would be end of August or early September. It's not really a big factor though. I think half our cases carried over.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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Yeah, definitely would. The roster situation won't be urgent until shortly before the season, but if they need to be prepared to have an extra spot it might impact draft or trade strategy during the draft, at least at the margins. Plus, if you need a 4-week back up QB, you'd like to know that sooner rather than later for cap purposes and because there aren't a huge number of candidates out there and you don't want to be left without a chair when the music stops.
 

Leather

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I just can't believe he may end up getting suspended over nothing at all and after all of this horseshit. It's fucking surreal.

It's like "Midnight Express" starring Tom Brady.
 
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Eddie Jurak

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Yeah, definitely would. The roster situation won't be urgent until shortly before the season, but if they need to be prepared to have an extra spot it might impact draft or trade strategy during the draft, at least at the margins. Plus, if you need a 4-week back up QB, you'd like to know that sooner rather than later for cap purposes and because there aren't a huge number of candidates out there and you don't want to be left without a chair when the music stops.
At this point a suspension seems likely enough that the Pats need to plan on not having him in weeks 1-4, right?
 

Leather

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Yes, true. And I'm sure Tom doesn't need to look at Giselle through a glass window when he, um, you know.
 

Harry Hooper

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MMQB has a story about some European players who are NFL prospects, including Germany's Moritz Boehringer who might actually get drafted this year.

It is interesting to read in the article about Osi Umenyiora's role in all this. Retired from his playing career, including winning 2 SUper Bowls with the Giants, Osi is now an employee of the NFL working out of the NFL UK office on promoting the NFL internationally. NFL UK brought a couple of players over to the U.S. for training.

Kyle Strongin, a former 49ers scout who is now a Nashville-based NFL agent, was at XPE visiting one of his draft clients when he saw Innis and Dablé working out. Their size impressed him. “Who are those guys?” he asked. That was a Friday. Intrigued, Strongin asked if he could send around their tape to a few NFL contacts. By Saturday the Seahawks were asking for Dablé to come in for a workout. By Sunday afternoon six other teams joined the queue.

Umenyiora, who played a decade for the Giants, didn’t want his old team to miss out. He phoned GM Jerry Reese and arranged for both players to visit East Rutherford first. That Wednesday, Reese, head coach Ben McAdoo and other team decision-makers filled the Giants’ field house as Dablé and Innis went through a 12-minute workout. They caught two or three passes, did a 40-yard dash and ran six or seven pass routes. After the two had physicals in Manhattan, Reese called Dablé up to his office. The Giants didn’t want him to go on the rest of his visits—they wanted to sign him on the spot, before he left the building. New York offered a three-year minimum-salary deal but would guarantee $50,000 as a show of good faith.
Once again, people may collect paychecks from NFL HQ, but their allegiances often lie with their old teams.
 
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bankshot1

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Whether the NFL told him to take the jersey off or it was his decision, there was no need to do it again.

Faulk nailed it on his first take.

I'm curious how wide-spread and how high-up his fashion decision was known in the organization.
 

BaseballJones

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Legal question here. It would seem that the 2nd court's decision affirms the NFL's claim that in matters involving the "integrity of the game", Goodell has wide latitude - almost carte blanche - power to implement penalties, even those far, far outside what the rule book normally calls for. So long as the "process" is done within the limits of the CBA. That is, the commissioner gathers information, issues a ruling, and then allows the player the opportunity to appeal the ruling - which, of course, could be heard by Goodell himself.

The court ruling has nothing to do with whether Goodell actually made a reasonable or right decision in the first place. From what it seemed throughout this entire discussion, legal precedent meant that even if someone in Goodell's position grossly erred, as long as he followed the proper process, the court really couldn't do anything about it.

So here's a scenario. Admittedly extreme, but I want to probe the consequences of this ruling.

The rule book allows for no tampering with footballs. Let's say that the officials erred and handed the Patriots a football that Brady was like, holy cow this is hard as a rock, and he told his ball guy to test it on the sidelines. Say it measured at 19.5 psi - way, way above the legal limit - and Brady said, get that down within range. And the ball guy did it. Now in this scenario, what Brady and the ball guy did is still totally against the rules, even though they'd just be taking an overinflated football and deflating it down to the proper psi range. Still - totally against the rules.

Let's say this was discovered, and Goodell decided that the penalty was going to be to suspend Brady for three full seasons.

Ok crazy, right? Right. No doubt. But let's say that was his ruling, citing the "integrity of the game", blah blah blah. And Brady appealed....to Goodell, and Goodell affirmed his prior ruling, and therefore, Brady is suspended for three seasons for this.

At what point would a penalty for an infraction be something that just is too ridiculous for a court to allow? If this 2nd court ruling stands, then can't Goodell do this? All Goodell would have to do is cite the "integrity of the game" and use the language that says "including but not limited to $25,000 fine". Because, I mean, the penalty he gave Brady for deflategate (even granting the pretty absurd premise that it happened in the first place) is quite extreme, given what the rule book calls for in the first place.

So could Goodell do this, based on the 2nd court's ruling?
 

PaulinMyrBch

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MYRTLE BEACH!!!!

Leather

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Why do all those people who claim that they got fired unfairly agree to stop getting paid?!
 

TheoShmeo

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This is from Pete Prisco's draft grade column this morning. How do national writers not understand the basics of this BS? "Forfeiting" a pick was a "draft move"??



http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/writer/pete-prisco/25573635/priscos-nfl-draft-grades-32-grades-for-32-teams-but-only-one-a
For the same reason that many Patriots fan continue to whine about Kraft not "fighting the good fight," as if Kraft going Al Davis on the NFL would have lead to a different result.
 

lexrageorge

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Legal question here. It would seem that the 2nd court's decision affirms the NFL's claim that in matters involving the "integrity of the game", Goodell has wide latitude - almost carte blanche - power to implement penalties, even those far, far outside what the rule book normally calls for. So long as the "process" is done within the limits of the CBA. That is, the commissioner gathers information, issues a ruling, and then allows the player the opportunity to appeal the ruling - which, of course, could be heard by Goodell himself.

The court ruling has nothing to do with whether Goodell actually made a reasonable or right decision in the first place. From what it seemed throughout this entire discussion, legal precedent meant that even if someone in Goodell's position grossly erred, as long as he followed the proper process, the court really couldn't do anything about it.

So here's a scenario. Admittedly extreme, but I want to probe the consequences of this ruling.

The rule book allows for no tampering with footballs. Let's say that the officials erred and handed the Patriots a football that Brady was like, holy cow this is hard as a rock, and he told his ball guy to test it on the sidelines. Say it measured at 19.5 psi - way, way above the legal limit - and Brady said, get that down within range. And the ball guy did it. Now in this scenario, what Brady and the ball guy did is still totally against the rules, even though they'd just be taking an overinflated football and deflating it down to the proper psi range. Still - totally against the rules.

Let's say this was discovered, and Goodell decided that the penalty was going to be to suspend Brady for three full seasons.

Ok crazy, right? Right. No doubt. But let's say that was his ruling, citing the "integrity of the game", blah blah blah. And Brady appealed....to Goodell, and Goodell affirmed his prior ruling, and therefore, Brady is suspended for three seasons for this.

At what point would a penalty for an infraction be something that just is too ridiculous for a court to allow? If this 2nd court ruling stands, then can't Goodell do this? All Goodell would have to do is cite the "integrity of the game" and use the language that says "including but not limited to $25,000 fine". Because, I mean, the penalty he gave Brady for deflategate (even granting the pretty absurd premise that it happened in the first place) is quite extreme, given what the rule book calls for in the first place.

So could Goodell do this, based on the 2nd court's ruling?
IANAL, but I noticed that noone answered this question, so I decided to take a stab (something I would not do in the legal issues thread, as, again, IANAL). I would answer your final question as "Unlikely".

The court was asked to rule whether Brady's suspension violated the process agreed upon in the CBA. The applicability of the actual punishment was never really challenged, aside from the NFLPA attempting to claim Brady's alleged conduct should be an "equipment violation". The court did rule that the NFL's punishment did not violate the process as per the CBA.

The legal principle of wide deference to the arbitrator's decision had already been in place long before the ruling by the Court of Appeals. I don't see that this ruling really changes that principle in any meaningful way, but I'm not really qualified to state with any certainty.

Had Brady been subject to a ridiculous penalty, say a 3 year suspension, the attorneys for the NFLPA likely would have made a much bigger deal about the length of penalty violating some other legal standards. I've seen the "law of the shop" argument noted previously, and I could see such an argument much more likely to succeed in such a case. I don't think there's a hard, identifiable line where a penalty becomes so ridiculous that the player would have a good chance of winning in court.
 

BaseballJones

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Thanks lex. I get that there's no definable line but my point is simply that it seems like Goodell, according to the courts, can implement any penalty he seems fit to give, and as long as he follows CBA process, there's nothing a player can do.

Because by any reasonable measure, the penalty Brady got was CRAZY. And Goodell argued that the NFL actually considered an *8* game suspension but apparently out of kindness dropped it to four.

So would an eight game suspension have caused the court to say, ok wait a minute. These powers granted in the CBA don't allow you to just issue ANY penalty you want.

I tend to doubt it, which means that Goodell probably literally could have suspended Brady for the entire year and it would have been ok. Which seems insane.
 

Leather

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It might have had an influence on the commentary, but I'd bet the 2nd Circuit would have ruled exactly the same way.

The answer to your hypothetical would be something like:

If Commissioner is doing an unsatisfactory job in the eyes of the players, then the players have other avenues to address the situation, such as renegotiating the CBA, or even a strike.

We've determined that the CBA allows him great latitude to punish players. How forcefully he wishes to wield that power is a matter of labor relations and business judgment and outside the scope of the courts authority to pass judgment upon.
 

Bleedred

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Thanks lex. I get that there's no definable line but my point is simply that it seems like Goodell, according to the courts, can implement any penalty he seems fit to give, and as long as he follows CBA process, there's nothing a player can do.

Because by any reasonable measure, the penalty Brady got was CRAZY. And Goodell argued that the NFL actually considered an *8* game suspension but apparently out of kindness dropped it to four.

So would an eight game suspension have caused the court to say, ok wait a minute. These powers granted in the CBA don't allow you to just issue ANY penalty you want.

I tend to doubt it, which means that Goodell probably literally could have suspended Brady for the entire year and it would have been ok. Which seems insane.
And by extension, what would have prevented Goodell from banning Brady for life? If one follows the logic of Judges Chin and Parker, the CBA allows the Commissioner to impose whatever penalty he deems necessary provided that he follows the law of the shop, which they concluded he did.
 

dcmissle

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And by extension, what would have prevented Goodell from banning Brady for life? If one follows the logic of Judges Chin and Parker, the CBA allows the Commissioner to impose whatever penalty he deems necessary provided that he follows the law of the shop, which they concluded he did.
32 owners. I do believe Brady was collateral damage.
 

dcmissle

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What do you mean, dcm?
I believe the report last week that the objective here was to skull fuck the Pats -- primarily cause they win too damn much. The thing they wanted was the TEAM penalty. But you need a villain before you take first round picks, and that is where Brady came in. The owners called the shots on this, the big ones. Goodell is a puppet.

Judge Berman figured this out, and that's why he called Mara in and put him in the hot seat.
 

Bleedred

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I believe the report last week that the objective here was to skull fuck the Pats -- primarily cause they win too damn much. The thing they wanted was the TEAM penalty. But you need a villain before you take first round picks, and that is where Brady came in. The owners called the shots on this, the big ones. Goodell is a puppet.

Judge Berman figured this out, and that's why he called Mara in and put him in the hot seat.
Maybe so, but legally, isn't the consequence of the 2nd Circuit opinion that Goodell had the authority to ban Brady for life (and anyone in the future, so long as he follows the same procedure as he followed in the Brady appeal) since he followed the law of the shop and the terms of the CBA? Assume that a majority of the owners were on board with it.
 

awallstein

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Maybe so, but legally, isn't the consequence of the 2nd Circuit opinion that Goodell had the authority to ban Brady for life (and anyone in the future, so long as he follows the same procedure as he followed in the Brady appeal) since he followed the law of the shop and the terms of the CBA? Assume that a majority of the owners were on board with it.
Not necessarily. The opinion is grounded by the undisputed premise "that the "law of the shop" requires the League to provide players with advance notice of “prohibited conduct and potential discipline."" (Page 14) The CoA merely rejected the District Court's judgement (that the award in question was defective due to its incomparability to the steroid policy, or its similarity to the stickum policy), and found that the punishment at hand satisfied the required notice for such conduct. A lifetime ban would have to clear a (still even) far higher hurdle.
 

lexrageorge

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I would assume that if Goodell did something really idiotic, like imposed a lifetime ban, the legal arguments made by the NFLPA would likely have been different. The District Court ruling probably would have appeared very different. And appellate judges are people, too. They may not have found any duty to overturn a 4 game suspension; they could have felt differently if the punishment would have permanently ended Brady's career. And crafted an opinion around that point.

It's a pure hypothetical. But I don't believe the appeals court blazed any novel legal trails in their ruling, so I don't see anything preventing players from appealing future punishments. I think the only thing that has been affirmed is that Goodell is allowed to act as both trial judge and appeals judge on such matters, because that was clearly specified in the CBA.
 

tims4wins

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Don't even know where to put this, but Schefter is getting killed over this tweet (as is Goodell)

Adam Schefter Verified account ‏@AdamSchefter


Roger Goodell was aware of Annie Apple's disappointment in lack of desserts at Draft in Chicago and sent her a delivery of brownies today.


my favorite reply was along the lines of "so Goodell was aware of this, yet was unaware of the Tunsil video that made the draft 'exciting' "
 

Granite Sox

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Schefter has uncharacteristically put himself in the middle of a couple of awkward situations recently (Hardy interview, BrownieGate). This doesn't deserve a tweet from the likes of him. Much more Breerish or Rapshittish...

He should stick to inside info, where he is (IMO) the best.
 

drbretto

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What's wrong with the Brownie thing? Other than almost making Goodell look like a human? I googled it. Don't get the problem. What am I missing?
 

drbretto

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Ok, so it's just the sarcasm about him noticing and taking care of a minor issue, etc etc, I get it... I was getting hung up on the act itself.
 

tims4wins

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Pretty much. If it was, say, Paul Tagliabue doing it, no one would bat an eye. But it is just so disingenuous, just like everything ginger does.
 

Bleedred

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Sorry to rehash old ground, but can someone help me with the Wells's reports conclusion that Walt Anderson used the non-logo gauge even though Walt Anderson's "best recollection" was that he used the logo gauge?

On page 47, Wells "credited" Walt Anderson's recollection about football PSI levels witnessed in the pregame gauging as accurate and reliable, but did not "credit" Walt Anderson's specific comment that his "best recollection" was that he used the logo gauge during the pregame gauging of the Balls. Thus, Wells concluded that Walt must have used the non-logo gauge, despite Anderson's specific recollection to the contrary. This, notwithstanding Wells's painstaking point that Anderson was one of the "most respected referees in the NFL" and "widely recognized as exceedingly meticulous, diligent and careful" (page 47).

Wells then directs the reader to Section VII.B of the report (pp.115-118) for an explanation as to why Exponent concluded that it was "most likely" that Anderson used the non-logo gauge. In discussing generally the consistent differentiation in measurements between the gauges of.30-.45 psi (logo gauge measured higher than the non-logo gauge), the report concludes "Exponent's experimental results were aligned with the measurements recorded at halftime, which indicated a consistent gauge-to-gauge differential of 0.3-0.45 psi. Exponent relied upon this information, as well as the fact that during the testing the Non-Logo Gauge never produced a reading higher than the Logo Gauge, to conclude that Walt Anderson most likely used the Non-Logo Gauge to inspect the balls prior to the game...."

I am sincerely trying to understand the logic of this conclusion. It totally and completely escapes me, but even giving Exponent and Wells the benefit of the doubt...what's the argument that the conclusion they made is logical?